27 July 2008

Would You Look for Edible Tidbits in the Compost Bin?

Your weekly dose of Spurgeon
posted by Phil Johnson
The PyroManiacs devote some space each weekend to highlights from The Spurgeon Archive. The following excerpt is from "A Mournful Defection," a sermon preached at a Sunday-evening service in 1877 at the Met Tab.


eceivers will beguile the weak; some have been turned aside by [post]modern doubt; and positive infidelity has its partisans. They begin cautiously by reading works with a view to answer scientific or intellectual scepticism. They read a little more, and dive a little deeper into the turbid stream, because they feel well able to stand against the insidious influence. They go on, till at last they are staggered. They do not repair to them who could help them out, but they continue to flounder on till, at last, they have lost their footing, and he that said he was a believer has ended in stark atheism, discrediting even the evidence of the existence of God.

Oh, that those who are well taught would be content with gospel teaching! Why should you be so unwise as to go through pools of foul teaching merely because you think it easy to cleanse yourself of its pollution? Such trifling is dangerous. When you begin to read a book and find it pernicious, put it aside. Someone may upbraid you for not reading it all through. But why should you?

If I have a joint of meat on my table of which the smell and the taste at once convince me that it is putrid and unwholesome, should I show discretion by eating the whole of it before giving my judgment that it is not fit for food? One mouthful is quite enough, and one sentence of some books ought to suffice for a sensible man to reject the whole mass. Let those who can relish such meat feed on it, but I have a taste for better food.

Keep to the study of the Word of God. If it be your duty to expose those evils, encounter them bravely, with prayer to God to help you. But if not, as a humble believer in Jesus, what business have you to taste and best such noxious fare when it is exposed in the market?
C. H. Spurgeon


11 comments:

Barbara said...


If I have a joint of meat on my table of which the smell and the taste at once convince me that it is putrid and unwholesome, should I show discretion by eating the whole of it before giving my judgment that it is not fit for food? One mouthful is quite enough, and one sentence of some books ought to suffice for a sensible man to reject the whole mass. Let those who can relish such meat feed on it, but I have a taste for better food.

*swoon*

Solameanie said...

Word!

VcdeChagn said...

Thanks for the response I need to all the people who say I should read all of something before I criticize it.

I have enough GOOD stuff to read, already. If I tried to read all the garbage, I'd be inundated.

allanclare said...

This summed up why, even though I bought 'The God Delusion' [sic] by Dawkins, I haven't read it yet. I read the preface (to the paperback edition) in which Dawkins 'warned' his readers to watch out for people who are christians who say they were once atheists... 'It's the oldest trick in the book' he writes. Trick? That is exactly what I was before I became a christian!
Also, one of the chapter titles is called 'Why There Is Almost Certainly No God'. Almost certainly?!?!??! What's the point of the whole book then????
Allan Clare, Bristol, UK.

Bo Salisbury said...

One mouthful is quite enough, and one sentence of some books ought to suffice for a sensible man to reject the whole mass. Let those who can relish such meat feed on it, but I have a taste for better food.

Do any you ever run into this ol' chestnut:

"Yeah, I know he's a little off on this and that, but I get so much from his books..."

It's like we're so hard up for good teachers, that we can't bear to ignore unwholesome meat. I know it's fashionable to lament the paucity of good Christian literature and theology, but in my world, I'm looking at shelves of excellent books, by proven authors I won't have the time to read until I'm retired. And, with podcasts there is enough good material out there to keep us busy for a good long time, without resorting to materials of questionable value.

Traditions ~ 2 thess.2:15 said...

I have read a little and lived a little since being saved in 1976 Oh that we had men like Charles Spurgeon and many that have gone on, not the carnival,disneyland Christians of late.The Rock star multimedia lightshow types of today do not scare me for myself but for others in our lost world and my grandchildren and great grandchildren.I sometimes attend a church that youth lead the worship
with electric instrumrents and really cool for them.But the older folks I have noticed stand in the last rows and few seem to be singing and the hymn books are not used though I see them picked up and held by the elder folk from time to time (like me)

Polycarp said...

Thank you for posting this, as I was not aware that the Prince of Preachers already used the same illustration I've been using for some time when it comes to the emergent chaos--only his has slightly different details, and is of course far better! I have said, even here at this blog, that I couldn't understand "why anyone would want to eat out of the dumpster behind a five-star restaurant when they could go through the front door, sit-down at a nice table, and eat as they are intended". It is so sad that emergent sympathy (i.e. looking for the good bits)is perhaps more prevelent than the emergent movement itself these days...or sympathy towards a variety of various forms of theological liberalism.

Mesa Mike said...

You'd think that just one YouTube criticism of Todd Bentley would be enough to pass judgment on his ministry, but never mind that.

We still need to go to Lakeland to see what's going on. People are getting healed! The Glory of God is being imparted!

It really drives me nuts how many people I come in contact with are obsessed with this revival stuff going on elsewhere. Like you have to spend money and go somewhere in order to get the blessings of the Holy Spirit.

donsands said...

"If it be your duty to expose those evils, encounter them bravely, with prayer to God to help you."

I appreciate those who read books, and then give reviews, and expose nay unbiblical doctrine that may be within the book.My pastor read the book, "The Shack", and did a four part video serious on his blog to review it.

For I am not going to take the time to read these types, but need to be aware of the content, so I can challenge those who may be drawn away.


"Yeah, I know he's a little off on this and that, but I get so much from his books..."-bo

Yes, I have this happen with John Eldredge book, "Wild at Heart". I read some of the silly stuff in the book, and this Christian said, "Yeah that's kind of dumb, but there's a lot of good things he says".

Wonderful post. Never get tired of Charles Haddon Spurgeon.

Simon and Jacqui said...

AMEN! Sir Spurgeon. I have been waiting to hear someone say something against the "I eat the meat but just spit out the bones" defense of false teachers. The title of the blog article says it all, now I have a coherent response to those who would use such a defense... Hurray!

yankeerev said...

I truly appreciate this clear reminder from the Prince of Preachers. My bookshelf is full of books that "I need to read", so they say. Some I do need to read, but I need to keep my nose in The Book as a priority, and, when pastorally I need to read a book that is shaping and influencing my congregation in a negative way, I must do so with great care and discernment so that I am not swept away by the cunning of the evil one.

Thanks...